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Ravens get second shot at Dez Bryant -- eight years later

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Seahawks, Cardinals potential landing spots for Dez (0:30)

Field Yates could see Dez Bryant fitting in with Seattle or Arizona, if he wants to avoid a team rebuilding. (0:30)

The release of Dez Bryant on Friday means the Baltimore Ravens can try to get the former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver eight years after nearly having the opportunity to draft him.

In 2010, it looked as though the Ravens were poised to take Bryant with the No. 25 pick. But the Cowboys traded three spots up to select Bryant just ahead of Baltimore.

When it was announced that the Cowboys had chosen Bryant, a team-produced video showed the scouts in the Ravens' draft room go stone-faced. Baltimore then decided to trade out of the first round.

Asked in 2012 whether the Ravens intended to pick Bryant, coach John Harbaugh said, "It was a long time ago. We liked him. Whether we would have taken him with that pick if we hadn't traded out -- if that's what you’re asking -- I really don't know. ... But he is a good player. He is a really talented guy."

Now, the Ravens are still in need of a wide receiver like Bryant. After signing Michael Crabtree and John Brown in free agency, Baltimore has continued to pursue more targets for quarterback Joe Flacco. The Ravens met with Eric Decker, reached out to Allen Hurns (who signed with Dallas) and brought in restricted free agents Cameron Meredith (who signed with New Orleans) and Willie Snead.

Bryant, 29, also fits a familiar profile for Baltimore. The Ravens have had success with veteran receivers who've been cut: Derrick Mason, Steve Smith and Mike Wallace.

What will weigh heavily in any potential pursuit is the money Bryant will command from other teams. The Ravens have $10.7 million in salary-cap room, which ranks 18th in the NFL, according to OverTheCap.com.

Even though Bryant has slowed, Baltimore could use another receiver who can step up in the red zone and can be physical after the catch. Since the beginning of the 2012 season, Bryant leads all NFL wide receivers with 58 touchdown catches. During that same stretch, Ravens wide receivers have caught 82 touchdown passes.

If the Ravens are able to get Bryant, it would be a long-awaited union.